By Quasha Ross
A while ago, I read a devotional entitled “Dream Big,” and it talked about what it took to become a great leader. It said:
“You make great leaders by pulling the growing leader out of their safe and known environment and throwing them into the deep end, all by themselves.”
I had to reread the passage because it aligned so well with my current life experience. On April 22, 2021, I relocated from Atlanta, Georgia, to Dallas, Texas. I did afraid, but I did it nonetheless. About a month earlier, I quit my job with no backup plan; I had no new job in sight. I just knew this was something I was being led to do, and so I had to take a leap of faith, and thank God I landed on my feet.
Starting over can be extremely uncomfortable, but it’s also a gateway to authentic leadership and growth. Know this, many of your uncomfortable experiences in life are usually meant to encourage someone else. These moments are to show others that what they believe is impossible, is in fact, possible. I don’t know who I’ve helped or will help along the way with this story of my relocation, but I know I’ve been inspired by the stories of others.
T.D Jakes talked about this idea in one of his sermons. He said that we become so comfortable knowing everything and being familiar with our surroundings (like our jobs) that we don’t desire to start over again. For instance, you might desire to switch careers, relocate, or start your own business, but because of your comfortability with your job, location, or guaranteed paycheck, you deny that you’re being called to something else; you don’t want to start over.
Yes, starting over is a scary thing. We think that starting over means demotion, but sometimes it’s a setup for promotion. Starting over can be an uncomfortable place, but it can promote positive qualities in your life, such as:
- new opportunities
- fresh perspectives
- like-minded friends & mentors
- knowledge & power
- clarity about your purpose
- better quality of life
All of these qualities manifest when you decide to become a student of life again. When you choose to give up the accolades and titles to start from the beginning again, this is where you learn what you’re truly made of. I understand that many of us have worked hard to climb the success ladder, and to hear that we must climb down to start over again on a new ladder, is quite difficult. But let me ask you this question, would you rather climb down the ladder or be pushed off? I ask this because sometimes it happens that way. When we don’t go willingly, we are forced.
Have you ever felt like it was time to move on from a position or situation? Did you drag your feet even though you knew you stayed too long? This is one of those scenarios that might cause you to be forced into an uncomfortable situation. You know it’s time to move on, but you don’t want to go because comfortability is hard to give up. Stepping into the unknown isn’t always a wonderful feeling. We all go through this tug-of-war with ourselves when making hard decisions, but when it’s time to go, it’s just time.
Trust me, I didn’t want to leave my job at all, not because I enjoyed it, but because I was comfortable there. I knew everything my job entailed, which kept me there even longer, but I wasn’t happy. I always wanted to relocate, but my fear always held me back.
So, this leads me back to the devotional. “Leaders are made when they are pulled out of their safe and known environment and thrown into the deep end, all by themselves.” All I’m saying is, don’t be afraid to go willingly.
For all of you who are fearful of starting over, I say walk in faith. Think of all the positive outcomes awaiting you. Remember, positive thoughts feed faith, and negative thoughts feed fear. Which one are you feeding?
Quasha Ross is a contributing writer for the Pedestal Project, LLC. She’s a creative writer who believes writing is a true art form. Find Quasha on Instagram @quashaross_